ILSA high school projects for biotechnology research

For over a decade, hundreds of high school and university students have been involved in research activities promoted by ILSA.


The biotech company in the field of agriculture has signed two agreements with two high schools, the Galileo Galilei of Arzignano, in the province of Vicenza and the Martino Martini of Mezzolombardo, in the province of Trento. The agreements provide a donation of 20,000 EUR for the purchase of new equipment for scientific laboratories.

This equipment will facilitate students in carrying out research projects with the aim to identify natural preservatives as an alternative to synthetic preservatives and to improve the performance of ILSA biostimulants as well as to promote increasingly efficient and sustainable agriculture.
In the case of the Galilei Institute, the fourth classes of the health and environmental biotechnology departments will be committed to evaluating the effectiveness of some plant origin prototypes (obtained using supercritical CO2 extraction technology) as preservatives. The third and fourth grades of the scientific Trentino High School applied sciences division, will be engaged in an intense two-week session for the recovery and enhancement of agri-food by-products through eco-sustainable processes.

The ILSA biotechnologist, Ilaria Tabarelli, who has been involved in corporate R&D since 2014, is responsible for these projects and explains: "These initiatives are related to school-work alternation and allow students to understand how the research phases develop at industrial level. They also allow students to resume the ranks of a learning process that was abruptly interrupted last year due to the pandemic and return them to laboratory activities using state-of-the-art equipment".

All the research phases for the development of new products or their enhancement will be covered: from the enzymatic hydrolysis tests on vegetable matrices to the observation of what happens to the seeds after the application of the analysed extracts, all the way through to the climatic chamber, the greenhouse and, finally, their application on the field.

The projects will last two years and have the dual purpose of raising the awareness and interest in ILSA in the eyes of young people seeking a scientific career whilst also carrying out research in the biotechnology field. The younger generations have an opportunity to be an active part in the ambitious goal of providing world agriculture with highly specialized, effective and sustainable technical inputs.

Biostimulants, unlike fertilizers and pesticides, do not perform their functions with nutritional or curative actions on crops but, instead, act on the secondary metabolism responsible for self-defence, making crops more resistant to environmental stress.

 ILSA is one of the most authoritative global companies to carry out research and marketing for these innovative products that allow both a low-environmental impact conventional agriculture and the promotion, development and improvement of organic farming.

In over 10 years, ILSA's school projects have involved hundreds of students from middle and high schools and universities. One of the objectives is to highlight the importance of scientific studies, a topic the pandemic has made even more strategic for Italy and every country.

"ScienceMatters" will therefore be the leitmotiv to represent the collaboration between ILSA and high schools for the next two years.